Formula 1

HRT Defiant Despite Criticism As They Fail To Qualify

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Hapless Hispania endured a torrid qualifying session in Australia as they failed to make the 107% lap time and will not feature in the race.

Hispania are the first team since 2002 to fail to make the cut, when Alex Yoong in a Minardi didn't qualify.

The Spanish outfit had barely been on track in any pre-season tests or in practice sessions this weekend and were a staggering seven seconds from the front and two seconds from the next team, Virgin Racing.

Both drivers Vitantonio Liuzzi and Narain Karthikeyan were outside the necessary time and have a lot of work back at the factory to try and improve for Sepang.

Hispania sparked criticism amongst the racing fraternity as to whether they should have even been on track but Team Principal Colin Kolles defended his team.

He said: “In the end it just couldn't be, still I'm incredibly proud of my whole team. Our drivers produced the maximum in the least amount of time possible.”

“We managed to get both cars ready in time for qualifying and proved that the car is capable of running a lot quicker than today.”

“The circumstances in which we arrived were not as desired. We created a miracle again, but it wasn't enough.”

“We'll be back stronger than ever in Malaysia. There we will have more time to test the car and show where the F111 really belongs”.

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Joe is covering anything to do with motorsport for The Checkered Flag and running a British GT site for the 2011 season - Find him tweeting at @JWFinnerty
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